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EXCLUSIVE: TSB Avios credit cards withdrawn

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The two TSB Avios credit cards were removed from the market this week.  They no longer appear on the avios.com or TSB websites.

TSB gave Head for Points the following statement last night:

We can confirm that the TSB Avios and Premier Avios Reward Credit Cards are no longer available to new applicants. This does not affect current customers who can continue to earn and spend Avios points as normal. TSB Customers can call 03459 758 758 if they need further guidance.

The TSB Avios credit cards have a complex history.

The original Avios credit cards issued by Lloyds were called Lloyds TSB Avios Duo.

In 2013 Lloyds and TSB were separated, with TSB eventually being sold to a Spanish group.  As part of the divorce, TSB got the dog, the Dire Straits CDs and the Lloyds TSB Avios Duo cards.  With a few tweaks, these were relaunched as the TSB Avios (free) and TSB Premier Avios (£50 fee) credit cards.

TSB Premier Avios

Lloyds simultaneously launched the Lloyds Avios Rewards credit cards.    These were superior to the TSB cards in almost every way.  Most impressive was the removal of FX fees which made – and still makes – Lloyds TSB Avios Rewards the ONLY UK credit cards to offer rewards and no currency conversion charges.

There were originally two versions of Lloyds Avios cards.  The basic version had a £24 annual fee.  There was also a Premier version with a £140 fee.

In July 2016, Lloyds withdrew the Lloyds Premier Avios credit card

And now, in November 2016, TSB has withdrawn the both versions of its Avios cards

The four Avios credit cards are now reduced to one.

TSB Avios cards

Will the TSB cards be missed?

No, not really.

There was no sign up bonus, apart from a limited 4,500 Avios ‘refer a friend’ bonus last year.

The Lloyds Avios cards had been carefully designed to offer a better combination of fees, benefits and rewards so there was little reason to choose the TSB version.  Even if you refused on principle to pay an annual fee, the Tesco Clubcard MasterCard was a better Avios deal than the free TSB card.

There was only one way in which the TSB cards shone out.  They offered double Avios on foreign spending.  This made the TSB Premier Avios American Express card the most generous card on the market to use abroad, as it earned 2.5 Avios points per £1.  That said, the £50 annual fee meant that it still did not make much sense unless you had substantial expenditure outside the UK.  The free TSB card paid 2 Avios per £1 on FX spend – although the 3% FX fee still made this unattractive unless someone else was settling your card bills.

Choice is always good, though, and the withdrawal of these cards means that there is less choice out there if you are looking for an Avios credit card.


Want to earn more points from credit cards? – October 2022 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points (SPECIAL OFFER), £200 travel credit and unbeatable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (28)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • James says:

    I have the original DUO cards but tend not to use them.
    My goto cards are the Amex Plat & IHG Visa.
    I really should revisit that as having stopped using the BAPP AMEX I no longer have a flight voucher to redeem.
    The single upgrade voucher of the DUO would come in handy. I think the Avios earn rate of the non-AMEX DUO card is pitiful though.

    Will have to have a good read through Rob’s recently updated credit card pages.

    • James says:

      That said I do still have two BA 2-4-1 Avios vouchers in play. One expires Feb 2017 & the other Feb 2018.
      Which ‘annoyingly’ means I’m going to have to have another holiday before the end of Feb 😉

      Will be a bit holidayed out though being in Thailand now (incredibly cheap QR J), South Africa earlier (another cheap QR J) and Vietnam for Christmas & New Year (gaining full benefits of QR’s Globetrotter campaign 2nd year in a row).
      All thanks to sites like this enabling me to increase my knowledge & awareness of loyalty schemes, good sales fares and unusual routings for value fares.
      Long may it continue.

      • Ali says:

        Sorry JAMES, what is QR?

      • RichT says:

        Incase you are a bit holiday fatigued, you only have to book before expiry, not travel 🙂

        • James says:

          So when I get my 2-4-1 in Jan/Feb 2017 on my premium BA card, I dont even have to BOOK until Jan 2019?

          • Scotts says:

            From Rules and Restrictions
            All British Airways American Express Credit Cards

            “22. Outbound travel must take place before the expiry date on the Companion Voucher however inbound travel can take place after the expiry date of the Companion Voucher.

          • Alan says:

            No, the BA voucher is different to the Lloyds one – it’s more restrictive in that outbound travel also has to take place. Whilst in the topic of vouchers, the GUV2 issued at 2500 TP is more similar to the Lloyds one in that you only have to book travel.

  • Our_Kid says:

    Well that’s quite funny as I applied for the Premier one last weekend and cards on the way! Must have been one of the last people to get in on the card – similar to the Diamond Club days.

    I couldn’t justify sticking with MBNA – I rarely fly Lufty or United and never Virgin so went with the TSB card. The 2.5x Avios foreign spend works for me on the Amex

  • Will Squires says:

    I noticed TSB cards were excluded from Shop Small this year.

    I imagine these cards will die completely next year when TSB move off Lloyds backend and on to theirs/Sabadels.

  • Mr Dee says:

    The only real benefit I believe is £5 cash back for Apple/Android Pay on the first £100 spend I believe

  • Doug says:

    So a set fee of £50 and 1.25 Avios for a 3p, bargain way to buy Avios, Not. Or am I missing the point.

  • Rachel says:

    I had the Lloyds Avios duo cards which I actually found quite good (and I do like to use them abroad) but had a nightmare when I first signed up trying to get the sign-on bonus Avios, although managed to sort it in the end.

    Which leads me to a slightly off-topic question… I’ve subsequently been awarded an Avios upgrade voucher (which I earned via the Lloyds Avios duo) which I want to use to upgrade a 1-way flight for my husband and I, but we are a few Avios short for the reward flight we want to book. I’ve converted all my BA miles into Avios but we have extra Avios in our BA household account under my husband’s name which we were hoping to also utilise. Is there any way I can convert these BA miles into Avios so we can use them for the upgraded reward flight? At the moment it seems I can’t (which is in contrast to the BA companion voucher which lets you use household accounts to book…) If we can’t use it, what is the cheapest way to purchase / acquire the extra Avios we need? Thanks in advance…

    • the_real_a says:

      You can of course purchase them, but depending on when you need to book – why not bring forward your spend at your favorite supermarket and purchase some gift vouchers on your AMEX?

    • mark2 says:

      Have you thought about transferring his BA Avios to his Avios account then creating a household Avios account (separate again afterwards).
      But check first that you can use the Lloyds voucher with booking from household.

  • flyforfun says:

    This is just part of the end of points based cards. I reckon in time the only ones left will be fee based cards that have other bells and whistles to keep you interested, but those who casually collected on cards (frequent shoppers as opposed to frequent flyers) will be less likely to apply for them.

    Should we start a RIP page for all the fallen cards? 🙂

  • Danksy says:

    Waste of space and worst customer service I’ve ever experienced… no loss on my part 😀

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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